I voted for President Obama in 2008, but my disillusionment began with the passing of the Affordable Care Act. I am, and always have been, an advocate of universal health care, but my frustration came when I saw that this bill did not offer anything close to what had originally been promised. I distinctly remember the anger I felt the day after the bill passed and I received an e-mail from the Obama administration asking if I wanted to buy a T-Shirt that stated the word health care with a large check mark next to it. It’s not complete, I recall thinking; our job is not done. But despite this shortcoming t-shirts were already being printed that sung the praises of the president and failed to mention that the work on bringing good health care to America had barely begun.
Over the next three years my enthusiasm continued to dwindle. We were promised the DREAM Act, and yet it never came to fruition; the Bush era tax cuts were renewed in what seemed almost a direct insult to the middle class who had voted Obama into office; the detention camp at Guantanamo Bay was still operational and violating rights to due process on a daily basis; I was annoyed that the president had not spoken out much earlier in favor of equal marriage. The list went on. And yet, while I was still upset about all these issues six months ago, and continue to be today, I somewhat self-consciously admit that the Obama campaign’s efforts have managed to convince me not only to cast my vote for Barack Obama on November 6, but also to voice my support loudly.
I am embarrassed to admit that I have been swayed in such a manner. After all, I’m sure the main objective of the Obama campaign was to target voters 22-30 years old who voted for Obama in 2008 and were now feeling frustrated by the lack of “progress.” But while I feel that I have been driven to believe that the country will be worse off if Obama is not reelected next Tuesday, I suppose the real feat is in convincing me that this is completely true. I have heard repeatedly that the things I wanted accomplished from 2008 to 2012 were halted due to immovable Republicans, and now I’m unashamed to advocate for a second term of presidency for Obama. The campaign has restored my faith that what is needed is four more years in which to accomplish that which is really important to me and other young voters in this country.
The acknowledgment of this maneuvering made me uncomfortable when I first saw it starting to happen many months ago. But I also admit that getting to know Mitt Romney for the last few months has only strengthened the case for the Obama campaign. With my exasperation directed at the outlandish Republican candidates, I began responding to the calls from the Obama campaign to return to the base of which I was a member four years ago. While I considered a vote for Jill Stein, I was instead convinced that a vote for Obama would give the country another chance at accomplishing the goals we were unable to in the last term. I sincerely believe that a second term of a Barack Obama presidency will give this country a better future than a first term of a Mitt Romney presidency, but then again, I suppose that is what they set out to make me believe.